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Defining Moments

Introduction to The Existentialism of Jean-Paul Sartre

While working to earn the livelihood, different people go through different kinds of experiences along with several ups and downs in their career. These ups and downs can be accountable to present various opportunities for growth as well as can be the reason behind the decline of the career of a person (Nietzsche & Mann, 2012). Moments and the decisions taken by a person which may either shape or devastate his or her career are termed as defining moments. During the entire career journey of a person, defining moments are the most significant instances as they are likely to change the existing conditions.

The purpose of this essay is to explore the defining moments related to the career journey of John Ilhan. The essay clearly articulates the defining moments by explaining the situations and decisions in the career of John. Along with this, the essay also develops a thorough understanding of the defining moments by exploring the concepts in Nina Rosenstand’s ‘The Moral of the Story’.

Defining Moments for John Ilhan

One of the defining moments in the career journey of John Ilhan can be seen when he took the decision to stop working in the factory, where his father Ali was working. This decision brought significant transformations in the life of John Ilhan as he could fulfil his dream of working in a corporate environment rather than working as an ordinary factory worker. Significant change and success acquired due to a single decision taken by the individual can be considered as the defining moment. This moment can be considered as the defining moment that created the corporate career of John.

Along with this, another defining moment is observed in the life of John, when he was the primary candidate to fill the designation vacated by George. It was found that John was overlooked by the top management in Ford when George is promoted to a higher position due to the lack of a professional degree. On the other hand, the organisation started recruiting young professionals with the degree. Hence, it can be analysed that the organisation valued degree over the hard work and experience of a person, which devastated the life of John Ilhan.

Also, a defining moment in John Ilhan’s life can be seen, when he acquired a job in Strathfield, which was focused on the hard work of employees rather than their academic abilities. Switch to this job again improved the wellbeing and condition of John. He could now get the remuneration worth his hard work and skills. This way, all defining moments in the life of John Ilhan brought significant changes and affected his ongoing conditions.

Jean-Paul Sartre’s View on The Defining Moments for John Ilhan

Jean-Paul Sartre was a French philosopher, which had a distinct view on one-self. According to Sartre, a human being is totally accountable for his or her situation because he is the only one who takes decisions. Therefore, no other person can be blamed for the occurrence of defining moments in one’s life (Streller, 2012). Considering the application of Jean-Paul Sartre’s view on the John Ilhan’s case; it can be said that Sartre would have held John accountable for all ups and downs in his career journey based on the decisions taken in the past. Along with this, it can be said that John must have put efforts to copy the approaches adopted by the young professionals with the degree to sustain in Ford, as per the views of Sartre. Therefore, it would be improbable to blame the top management in Ford responsible for John’s overlooking. Similarly, it is also found from the case study that John made disrupt decisions to stop working in as a factory worker and joined the job in Ford, which resulted as a defining moment. According to Sartre, John was fully responsible for creating his career as a corporate officer in Ford due to his disrupts decisions (Webber, 2009). Hence, decisions taken by John during the career journey were the main causes behind several defining moments. Due to either appropriate or inappropriate decisions of John, ongoing conditions in his life changed.

Christina Hoff Sommers’s View on The Defining Moments for John Ilhan

Christina Hoff Sommers was a social philosopher, which had different views on virtues and ethics to be considered in organisations and professional environment. As per the view of Sommers, organisations are required to make decisions based on the rational factors and sense of responsibilities (Sommers, 2015). The organisation is a group of people working for a common cause due to which decisions cannot be left to moral grounds. On the other hand, a strategic approach should be there to take and implement decisions, which may be benefitting to everyone. Upon analysing the case study of John Ilham; it can be understood that the views of Christina Hoff Sommers do not advocate the promotion of John on moral grounds in Ford. It was found that John did not have any professional degree due to which he was overlooked from the promotion and growth opportunities in Ford. According to Sommars, the organisation took valid and rightful decisions as John lacked the abilities, which were possessed by young graduates and professionals (Sommers & Sommers, 2004). Therefore, as per the philosopher, Ford took the right decisions of not providing growth opportunities to John, which was a major defining moment in his life. Similarly, decisions taken by Strathfield to provide employment opportunities to John based on his skills were right as the management found his skills useful for organisational growth. Hence, Sommars views advocate the decisions taken by the organisations behind the emergence of a defining moment in John’s life.

Friedrich Nietzsche’s View on The Defining Moments for John Ilhan

Similar to philosophers such as Sommars and Sartre; Friedrich Nietzsche also has proposed a theory, which is termed as cognitive relativism. According to the viewpoint of Nietzsche; bookish knowledge and degrees cannot provide the guarantee of wisdom (Nietzsche & Mann, 2012). Social interaction and real-life experience of a person are entirely accountable to define him or her. Experiences cannot be gained through academic books and degrees due to which people holding an only degree and lacking experiences cannot be compared to people having experiences and not holding a degree. Considering the application of the view presented by Nietzsche to the given case study; it can be analysed that defining moments in John’s life such as acquiring a job in Strathfield emerged only due to the huge experience of him. Therefore, he can be credited for the defining moments, which enhanced his wellbeing. Contrary to this, Nietzsche would have held Ford responsible faulty for not offering the promotion to John, when George vacated the position. Nietzsche would have advocated John over the fresh graduates with a degree in Ford to acquire growth and higher position in Ford. Also, it can be said that according to Nietzsche, Strathfield did the right job, where hard work, experience and laborious nature of John was admired (Nietzsche, 2019). Therefore, Nietzsche would have held John responsible for defining moments, which brought prosperity in his life. Also, the philosopher would have held Ford accountable for defining moments, making John’s life miserable.

Emmanuel Levinas’s View on The Defining Moments for John Ilhan

Emmanuel Levinas’s philosophy is considered parallel to that of Sartre’s philosophy. According to the philosopher, the only factor accountable for generating different defining moments in John’s life is his decisions (Katz & Trout, 2005). People make decisions as per their understandings and beliefs, which may or may not fructify in future. Rational decisions can be the reason behind the defining moments, which may enhance wellbeing and bring prosperity and growth. At the same time, the inability to take adequate decisions may allow people to face miserable consequences. It can be understood that Levinas would have evaluated the decisions taken by John before and after every defining moment in his life (Hand, 2008). Not only this but, he would have considered John as the capable or incapable person to cope up with the emerging situations and take complying decisions. Therefore, according to Levinas, decisions taken by John were admirable due to which he could transform his life from a factory worker. Also, it can be said that John was fully responsible for not taking effective decisions to acquire the desired position in Ford. The defining moment emerged in the life of John could emerge as he took complying decisions. Hence, Levinas would have considered the individual fully responsible for the changes in his ongoing conditions and situations.

Conclusion on The Existentialism of Jean-Paul Sartre

It can be concluded from the above essay that there were several defining moments in the life of John Ilham when he worked in different companies and factories throughout his career journey. These defining moments have resulted in the intense growth and decline for John. Also, it can be said that different defining moments in John’s life can be viewed differently by various philosophers such as Sommars, Sartre and Levinas. According to Sartre and Levinas, decisions taken by John were the main cause behind the defining moments in his life; leading either to good and bad situations. These philosophers focus on the decisions and accountability of John to make his life easy and complying to the situations. Along with this, it can also be said that Sommars would have held Ford company right when the defining moment of lack of promotion occurred. Also, Nietzsche would have viewed organisations such as Ford adopting unethical for not providing growth opportunities to John. The philosopher would have emphasised on the value of experiences and hard work over the degree of the graduates.

References for The Existentialism of Jean-Paul Sartre

Hand, S. (2008). Emmanuel Levinas. USA: Taylor & Francis

Katz, ‎C. & Trout, L. (2005). Emmanuel Levinas: Levinas and the history of philosophy. UK: Routledge

Nietzsche, ‎F. & Mann, H. (2012). The Essential Nietzsche. UK: Dover Publications

Nietzsche, F. (2019). The Will to Power. UK: Dover Publications

Sommers, ‎C. & Sommers, F. (2004). Vice & Virtue in Everyday Life Introductory Readings in Ethics. USA: Wadsworth/Thomson

Sommers, C. (2015). The War Against Boys How Misguided Policies are Harming Our Young Men. USA: Simon & Schuster

Streller, J. (2012). Jean-Paul Sartre: To Freedom Condemned A Guide to His Philosophy. USA: Philosophical Library/Open Road

Webber, J. (2009). The Existentialism of Jean-Paul Sartre. USA: Taylor & Francis

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